Whilst other unemployment figures continue to fall, the number of lone parents on JSA carries on rising and is now over 150,000.
November’s figures – the latest available – show that Lone Parents make up 10.25% of all JSA Claimants – up from just 1% five years ago.
Three quarters of these have children at Primary school.
These figures mean we need
- More Breakfast clubs, After School Clubs and Holiday Play Schemes
- More Part-time work
- A living wage commitment
Sanctions also rising.
On JSA Lone parents have to be actively seeking work and failure to comply with mandated activity means sanctions. I now regularly have women attending our Take three days and Parents’ Job Clubs who are on a sanction. This means that they not only have their benefit stopped they also face problems with their housing benefit. A double whammy and very damaging for their children. Often the women themselves are very unsure of why they have been sanctioned. This is something we will be monitoring.